Photo @ INPI
On July 20th and 21st, in the framework of the Free, Prior and Informed Consultation Process for the Constitutional and Legal Reform on the Rights of Indigenous and Afro-Mexican Peoples, several regional consultation forums were held in the territory of Chiapas.
In San Cristobal de Las Casas, Copainala, Palenque, Ocosingo and Comitan de Domínguez “the voices of the Tzotzil, Tzeltal, Totonaco, Chinanteco, Ch’ol, Zoque, Lacandon, Chuj, Maya, Q’eqchi’ and of the indigenous migrant population settled in the Highlands, North and Lacandon Jungle regions came together”, the National Institute of Indigenous Peoples (INPI in its Spanish acronym) said.
During his participation in the forum in San Cristobal de Las Casas, the indigenous poet Irma Pineda, member of the Committee of Experts and representative of the indigenous peoples before the United Nations, mentioned that “the peoples themselves must decide what they want from their culture and life forms. We are in a historical moment and we must make our voices resonate in the laws.”
One of the approaches in which the voices of the participants in Chiapas coincided was that “their autonomy and free self-determination to be governed under their own organizational systems be respected (…) that their full right to use and exploitation of their lands, territory and natural resources be recognized in the Constitution.” These are requirements that were raised by other peoples of the nation in previous weeks.
In Copainala, they highlighted “the requirement to modify Article 27 of the Constitution to recognize full ownership over their lands and territories; in addition, guarantee the participation of translators and interpreters in government institutions to guarantee access to justice in their own languages.”
In Ocosingo they asked for “the laws to be modified and the judicial and criminal system to be harmonized to recognize their regulatory systems, as well as access to justice while respecting their human rights. The presence of experts and speakers of indigenous languages in the corresponding institutions is considered fundamental to improve legal procedures.” The women asked for the right to land tenure.
From the beginning, the INPI free consultation process was criticized by different organizations and individuals. They criticized “that there was no participation of the players consulted in its elaboration (…) the rush with which the consultation was made (…) that the assemblies [of the communities and peoples] had not been taken into account.”
For more information in Spanish:
Cumplimiento de los Acuerdos de San Andrés, asignatura pendiente del Gobierno de México: Regino Montes. (Instituto Nacional de los Pueblos Indígenas, 21 de julio de 2019)
Más de dos mil autoridades y representantes indígenas de Oaxaca participan en foro de consulta para reforma constitucional (Instituto Nacional de los Pueblos Indígenas, 13 de julio de 2019)
Se cumplirán acuerdos de San Andrés: INPI (La Jornada, 23 de julio de 2019)
Acerca de la Consulta para el proceso de reforma constitucional sobre derechos de los pueblos indígenas y afromexicanos (La Jornada, 14 de julio de 2019)
Reprograman autoridades indígenas de la Sierra Juárez mesa “Territorio” de consulta del INPI (EDUCA, 19 de julio de 2019)
For more information from SIPAZ:
National: Process of “Free, Prior and Informed Consultation” on Constitutional and Legal Reform of Rights of Indigenous and Afro-Mexican Peoples Begins (June 27, 2019)
National/International: UN Special Rapporteur for Indigenous Peoples Calls on AMLO Government to Comply with International Standards on Indigenous Consultation for Megaprojects in their Territories, March 19th, 2019
Oaxaca/National: Federal Government Presents National Program for Indigenous Peoples December 28th 2018
National/International: UN Special Rapporteur on Rights of Indigenous Peoples Presents Report in Mexico City One Year after her Visit (October 22nd, 2018)
Oaxaca/National: Federal Government Presents National Program for Indigenous Peoples (January 14, 2019)
Chiapas: 18 años years after the signing of the San Andrés Accords on Indigenous Rights and Culture, these continue not to be recognized by the State (March 1, 2014)
Chiapas: new governor calls for observance of San Andrés Accords (January 8, 2013)
La ONU aprueba la Declaración de los Derechos de los Pueblos Indígenas (September 13, 2007)